The Alaska Aces will get a tough test this Saturday in the form of the streaking TNT Tropang Giga. Will the Aces trip up TNT? Or, will the Tropang Giga add Alaska to their growing list of victims in this conference?
Catch this game live on September 18 at 4:35 pm, Manila time.
The Alaska Aces (3-4)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Mike DiGregorio
- SG: Maverick Ahanmisi
- SF: Jeron Teng
- PF: Rodney Brondial
- C: Abu Tratter
Alaska is feeling good after taming the Barangay Ginebra San Miguel Friday night in an 89-75 win. The Aces will now look to avoid losing to TNT four times in a row. The last time the Aces crossed paths with TNT, Alaska absorbed a 104-83 loss back in the quarterfinals round of the previous conference. In that game, the Aces were led by the trio of Jeron Teng, Maverick Ahanmisi, and Vic Manuel, with each scoring at least 12 points. Manuel, however, is no longer with Alaska, so the offense for Alaska against the Tropang Giga will look different this time around.
Mike DiGregorio scored just four points in that contest on 1-of-5 shooting but expect him to get more shot attempts as the primary scorer of the Aces. Meanwhile, Yousef Taha should be able to provide the muscle down low for Alaska. His tenacity on both ends of the floor and efficiency will help in combating TNT’s frontcourt. Alongside Taha will be Abu Tratter and Rodney Brondial, who are both dependable assets in Alaska’s frontcourt that doesn’t shy away from doing the dirty work inside.
The TNT Tropang Giga (9-1)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Brain Heruela
- SG: RR Pogoy
- SF: Mikey Williams
- PF: Troy Rosario
- C: Kelly Williams
Who’s going to stop Mikey Williams? No one has quite solved Williams yet. He’s been turning heads and getting much defensive attention, but he continues to sizzle from the field. On the conference, he is averaging 19.1 points per game while shooting 36.6 percent from behind the arc. The last time Williams was on the floor, he laid waste all over the Northport Batang Pier’s defense, scoring 29 points on 10-of-19 shooting from the field and 5-of-8 from long range.
Jayson Castro and RR Pgoy combined for just 12 points on 3-of-13 shooting against NorthPort and yet TNT managed to crush that game, which goes to show how deep and talented the Tropang Giga roster is. Kib Montalbo had his breakout game against the Batang Pier with 22 points in 24 minutes, while the tandem of Troy Rosario and Kelly Williams had 29 points. The potential of TNT’s offense is terrifying. It’s fair to expect Alaska to have a hard time keeping up with the Tropang Giga this Saturday.
Spread: A fatigued Alaska squad will keep in step with TNT in the early goings but once the Tropang Giga inevitably hit their stride, there will be no looking back for them. Take TNT to win and cover (-4).
Over/Under: You can trust TNT’s offense, but not Alaska’s. Take the Under (169.5)